BYU students discuss pros, cons of daylight saving

The BYU life science building during sunset. With daylight savings on Sunday, sunset will be an hour earlier. (Stacia O’Leary)

Daylight saving time begins this Sunday, March 12.

According to a study done on the effects of daylight saving time on sleep, changing clocks twice a year to preserve daylight occurs in over 70 countries across the world, including the United States.

Original attribution to the idea of daylight saving is attributed to Benjamin Franklin, who was concerned with the “economic cost of energy consumption during dark evenings,” the study said.

Daylight saving was first adopted by Great Britain in 1916 on the basis of aligning working hours with sunlight, military training in daylight, reducing energy costs, and more outdoor recreation possibilities in the evenings, according to the study. Since its adoption in the early 1900s, the study said there has been “strong opposition,” to the practice.

Bella Otto, a BYU student from Arizona, said she wishes daylight saving would end. “I don’t feel like it is necessary,” she said.

Otto discusses her first time practicing daylight savings. Otto is from Arizona where daylight savings has not been practiced since the 1960s. (Stacia O’Leary)

Hawaii and Arizona are the only states not to practice daylight saving. Hawaii stopped practicing daylight saving in 1967, due to the sun rising and setting around the same time, regardless of the change. Arizona, except Navajo Nation which is found in Arizona, stopped the practice in an effort to keep temperatures lower during waking hours for residents, according to Almanac.

“For me, the first time it happened I didn’t realize how much of an effect it would have on my body,” Otto said. “It really threw me off because I wasn’t getting enough sleep.”

Otto said that it has been an adjustment, trying to get used to the concept of the time changing.

BYU student Spencer Lambert, said he enjoys daylight saving. “I do like daylight savings,” Lambert said. “There is more light later, and I like being able to leave work and get to see the sunset still.”

Lambert said that daylight saving is beneficial both in the spring, when people ‘lose’ an hour of sleep, as well as in the fall when they ‘gain’ an hour.

While some, such as Lambert, enjoy daylight savings, there have been multiple bills sent to congress to abolish daylight savings. The most recent of these bills was proposed in 2021, called the Sunshine Protection Act of 2021. The bill passed a vote in the senate in March of 2022, and has not yet been brought forward in the House for discussion.

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